July 29, 2012
Entrepreneur Rommel Juan, founder and chief executive of homegrown Binalot Fiesta Foods Inc., is taking his ultimate Filipino fastfood venture to the next level, or more appropriately to the next street.
Binalot, a trail-blazer in the fastfood industry, plans to sell its wrapped local meals onboard vans, a concept inspired by the movable food trucks in the US.
Juan is introducing the Binalot Food Van as a new franchise model. He says the concept will be good for agriculture and the environment.
“Support banana farmers while sustaining the environment for our kids,” he says, in encouraging entrepreneurs to embrace his new franchise model.
In 1996, Juan popularized the old Filipino tradition of wrapping meals with banana leaves, a method that retains the smell and flavor of local favorites such as adobo, bistek, tapa, tocino, sisig, longganisa and salted egg with tomatoes, on top of rice.
He describes Binalot Food Van as a whole store unit and an eco-friendly mobile food solution.
Basically, the Food Van is a Binalot store mounted on a trailer, he says.
The cab chassis was built by Mitsubishi Corp.’s dealer Peak Motors, with the modified body manufactured by local truck body builder Centro Manufacturing Corp.
“The Binalot Food Van will cater to people on the go, perfect for events and outdoor activities,” he says.
He says with Binalot Food Van, “popular Pinoy classics such as adobo, bistek, tapa, tocino, sisig, longganisa [with salted eggs and tomato] can now be enjoyed wherever and whenever you want it.”
Juan also introduces Binalot’s new Company Supervision Scheme which allows franchisees to manage a franchise by remote control. Under the scheme, Binalot will assign its own supervisor for the store and effectively manage the store for the franchisee.
He says the two offerings will bring the banana wrapped classics closer to customers, a testament to Binalot’s commitment in filling that niche of an All-Filipino green quick-serve restaurant.
“After joining different franchise shows and expos, inquiries start arriving after a year since prospective franchisees screen and weigh their options so they spend more time evaluating. Contacts were established with deals and contracts eventually inked,” Juan says.
He says proven examples are Binalot stores at California Garden Square in Mandaluyong City, Jupiter St. in Makati City, and Robinsons mall in Imus.
Binalot has expanded mainly on the strength of franchising. “We have a total of 38 stores, six of which are company-owned, the rest franchised to partners,” Juan says.
Juan invites prospective franchisees to join the Binalot business and help promote everything fun about being Filipino.
Binalot will offer pre-approved sites for franchising with the Binalot Food Van, but areas may be bigger because of the mobility of the new store units.
Binalot Food Van participated in the three-day Franchise Asia Philippines Expo 2012 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City on July 27 to 29.